Filters will allow some signals to pass through while blocking others. A bandpass (a.k.a. band-pass) filter allows signals of a certain frequency range (“a band of frequencies”) to pass through the filter as-is. (This range of accepted frequencies is called the passband. The size or range of the passband is called the bandwidth.) With a […]
The terms sensor and transducer are frequently used interchangeably, however, there are differences. Going strictly by definition, a transducer is a device that translates primarily nonelectrical quantities into electric signals . Instrument engineers limit the definition to a device used for measurement purposes. In this context, transducers can be used for measuring mechanical, thermal acoustic, […]
Part 1 of this FAQ looked at the basics of thermocouples, where and why they are used, and some basic implementation issues; this part explores interface issues, cold junction compensation, and linearization. What are the requirements on thermocouple interface electronics? The thermocouple voltage is relatively small, so long leads between the thermocouple and the electronic front-end […]
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RISC stands for Reduced Instruction Set Computer and is a type of architectural processor design strategy. “Architecture” refers to the way a processor is planned and built and can refer to either the hardware or the software that is closest to the silicon on which it runs. An Instruction Set Architecture (ISA) specifies the basic […]
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The world is full of MOSFETs — they are the cornerstone of most ICs. However, the humble JFET still exists, although it is a bit of a niche market now and not always easy to find. Vishay, who took over the Siliconix brand many years ago, seem to have dropped JFETs now, although Siliconix was one […]
by Haifeng Fan Synchronous buck regulators are widely used in industrial and infrastructure applications to step down 12V rails to point-of-load inputs as low as 0.6V for microcontrollers, FPGAs, memory and peripheral I/Os. Overcurrent protection (OCP) is essential to protect these switching regulators from damage by excessive current. Cycle-by-cycle current limiting is typically used due […]
Temperature is the most frequently measured real-world variables, and despite its age, the thermocouples are still among the most-used temperature sensors. They are used in test and measurement equipment, instrumentation, and even in standard home ovens due to their low cost, reliability, simplicity, and ability to measure into the hundreds of degrees. What is a […]
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Documenting code is something most people dislike doing. By the time you are done with writing, debugging, testing, fixing and re-testing, you are so sick of it that you just don’t want to look at it anymore. But most of us have already been on the other side of the code: a recipient of some […]
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RDS(on) stands for “drain-source on resistance,” or the total resistance between the drain and source in a Metal Oxide Field Effect Transistor, or MOSFET when the MOSFET is “on.” RDS(on) is the basis for a maximum current rating of the MOSFET and is also associated with current loss. All things being equal, lower the RDS(on), […]
As the use of LEDs for area lighting has grown dramatically, with both the use of LED-based replacement bulbs as well as LED-based fixtures for new construction (called luminaires in the trade), the issue of dimming these LEDs becomes more critical. LEDs require a very different technique for dimming than the conventional legacy incandescent bulb. […]